Can you believe that November is half over and next week is THANKSGIVING! It feels like just yesterday my kids and I were soaking up the sun at Signal Bay Water Park. Since school started, time has flown by. My favorite holiday season is approaching fast! Which makes me wonder if I am ready! Of course I am ready for all the family gatherings and good food! However, all the shopping has me overly stressed. I can’t stand large crowds and long check out lines. It is hard to not get overworked during the holiday season. I know I am not alone when I say that after Thanksgiving, I always feel like I am on the fast track to Christmas. I have to go shopping, make sure the house is clean for family coming over, get the kids Christmas outfits, send out Christmas cards, the list goes on! I looked up “Stress over the holidays” and sure enough, a lot of people out there are like me! I came across some really helpful tips to relieve stress and prevent burnouts during the holiday season:
- Have a positive attitude.
- Try not to worry about things out of your control.
- Problem solve with people around you. Ask them to help you alleviate stress.
- Exercise. A few extra minutes of exercise a day can benefit your overall health. (Swimming can be great for this FYI!)
- Eat Nutritional food. Decrease the amount of fat and sugar you eat.
- Meditate, or take a class in relaxation and stretching techniques –like Tai Chi or Yoga.
- Avoid drinking caffeinated beverages
- Rest. Try to get eight hours of sleep each day.
- Get a massage. A massage can be beneficial for the mind and body.
If you get anxious over the holidays, try and figure out what it is that you are stressing about. Are you feeling stressed because you’re not going to be able to fulfill your children’s gift requests? Are you and your spouse wrangling over holiday expenses? Are you feeling left out because your friends are enjoying the season and you’re not?
It is also important to take a look at your “attitude”. Changing your attitude can make a big difference. Ask yourself: Is your situation a small, medium or large problem? How upset do you want to be over it, and for how long? Look at the possibilities around you, not the restrictions.
For me, instead of stressing out about all the things I don’t like about the holiday, I really try to focus on the parts I like. With 3 young kids, I really try to focus the holiday on special activities like putting up the tree, seeing Santa, and parades! Fortunately, a majority of the fun, the special activities I have planned for them are right here in Manassas Park! To help you in your holiday activities planning, here is a break down of what we have going on locally:
This Saturday, November 17 from 9am-2pm, is the Fall Arts and Crafts Cornucopia. Start your holiday shopping off at the Community Center with one-of-a-kind gifts!
Friday, November 30th from 7:45pm-9:15pm, Arthur Christmas Dive-in-Movie at the Manassas Park Community Center. Free Event!
Thursday, December 6th at 7pm. Dough Ornaments. Make your own dough ornaments at the Manassas Park Community Center. $5/person
Saturday, December 8th from 5:45pm-7pm. Light Parade on Manassas Drive. A unique twist on the holiday parade, as this one is held in the dark, and vehicles are illuminated with holiday lights! FREE to watch, $10/vehicle to participate!
Thursday, December 13th at 7pm at MPCC. Gingerbread House Decorating: We will provide the materials, you provide the creativity! $5/person
Saturday, December 15th 9am-11am at MPCC. Breakfast with Santa. Join Santa for pancakes, photos and games. $5/person.
However you spend your holiday season, I hope that it is great and full of fun and laughter. Try not to stress too much about holiday shopping. Make sure you take some time to enjoy the season and take a break once in a while. These upcoming events are the perfect opportunity for you to spend some quality time with the family!
Sarah Barnett is Aquatics Supervisor for the Manassas Park Parks and Recreation Department. She can be reached at 703.335.8872 x3672 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community Matters is a blog created by the City of Manassas Park Department of Parks and Recreation. The blog features program updates, announcements of new services, special event notices, or information of general interest.